Wednesday, January 10, 2007 at 9:58 AM
The mission of the Library of Catalonia is to collect, preserve, and spread Catalonian bibliographic production and that related to the Catalonian linguistic area, to look after its conservation, and to spread its bibliographic heritage while maintaining the status of a universal center for research and consultation.
This translation of the National Library of Catalonia's mission statement makes it clear why the National Library of Barcelona, Catalonia's largest library, and four affiliate Catalonian libraries have decided to join the Google Book Search Library Project. By digitizing these libraries' out-of-copyright books, millions of people around the world will be able to trace Catalonian history and culture through centuries of text.
As a Barcelona native living in Ireland for nearly three years, I rarely have the chance to walk through Las Ramblas and take the Carrer Hospital to the beautiful gothic building that houses the National Library of Catalonia. But in the future, no matter where I am, I'll be able to search and browse through the collection of public domain books the National Library and its affiliates will be making available through Google Book Search; and, like me, users around the world will be able to discover the rich heritage of the National Library of Catalonia, in line with the library's noble mission.